Like most writers, I daydream about a writing retreat where I can create for hours, undisturbed by the mundane cares of daily life. I often think could complete a true masterpiece if I only had the time. And the silence. And the space.
I spent all day Friday and Saturday shut up in a hotel room so far removed from civilization I couldn’t even hear the elevator ding down the hallway. The room was pleasant, the desk chair was comfy, and the light was mostly adequate. I managed to fill the first day with research and covered stacks of note cards with valuable information which might someday appear in a book. Or not.
The second day, I stared at my computer screen. Then I checked my mail. Even my peeps were silent. I stared some more. Then I checked my project tracker to see how many articles I currently have in circulation. A dismal number. I stared some more. I read for a while and then wandered around the room looking for inspiration. That is when I remembered the secret.
My writing inspiration comes from life. From living. With people. Noisy, sometimes needy, often disruptive, people. Just remembering that unlocked me a bit, and I managed to crank out an entire article and send it off into cyber-space. I treasured those last few hours of silence, and reminded myself I’d be begging for them again in a few days.
But I hope I’ll remember when I get back home that a life without people isn’t worth writing about at all.